If Pat’s kick high and right of Les Dawson at the Millennium Stadium signalled the end of the season (and near pandemonium amongst the Arsenal hordes), then it also seems to have fired the starting gun for this summer’s proper business: transfer nonsense.
There’s loads of it already, it’s amazing. On the one hand, we’ve got contract talks – Pires wants two years, Freddie wants a new deal, Dennis has got the one year he (and most of the fans) all wanted, and we’ve got to try to sort something out with Ashley – and on the other, there are the possible incomers, with Wenger’s widely touted soundbite of wanting “one or two world-class players” getting people’s tongues wagging.
This Guardian article mirrors my own personal views: That we need a new striker, we need to strengthen on the right – either at right-back or in right-midfield or both – and I also wouldn’t be surprised if another keeper came in to challenge Lehmann (properly challenge him – so not like Almunia).
Lauren is a fine right-back, and has got on with his job with no bother, but he was exposed time and again on Saturday, and he didn’t look at all comfortable. Fair enough, he was playing someone with great talent (though I say it through gritted teeth), but perhaps that’s still an area we need to look hard at.
At right-midfield, we have been linked with Alexander Hleb (Stuttgart) and Wright-Phillips, and I think something will happen there too, though whether either of those players are the real targets is open to debate. If Bentley has a future with us, it might also be in that role, but I think he’s got a fight on his hands to prove he is yet worthy of a starting berth, especially in the middle of midfield.
The same Guardian article also points out we need more variety in our play, and I think there’s a point there. When our pinpoint passing game works it’s awesome, but when it doesn’t, we need to change things around a bit. More crosses and a man who can score from them would be good.
So, three new players, tie up deals with Bob, Freddie, and Co, sort out the Cole thing one way or another and use more width. That’s all thanks Arsene.